HDF 211 Study Guide Chapter 3

Physical Growth and Development in Infancy

Patterns of Growth

What is the cephalocaudal pattern?

The sequence in which the earliest growth always occurs at the top – the head – with physical growth and differentiation of features gradually working their way down from top to bottom.

What is the proximodistal pattern?  

Sequence in which growth starts at the center of the body and moves towards the extremities.

The Brain
What is Shaken Baby Syndrome?

Brain swelling and hemorrhaging because of shaking the baby’s head.

What are the effects? Who are the perpetrators?

Brain swelling and hemorrhaging. Fathers are most often the perpetrators followed by child care providers and boyfriends of victims mothers.

What is the EEG? In a study using the EEG, what was found regarding mother-infant interaction?

Electroencephalogram. Higher quality mother infant interaction early in infancy predicted higher quality frontal lobe functioning that was assessed with EEG later in infancy.

What is the cerebral cortex?

Covers the forebrain like a wrinkled cap.
What is lateralization?

Specialization of function in one hemisphere of the cerebral cortex or the other.

What has happened by the time of birth?

The hemispheres of the cerebral cortex have started to specialize.

What has been the research focus on brain lateralization?

Focused on language. Speech and grammar are localized in the left hemisphere in most people, but some aspects of language such as appropriate language use in different contexts and the use of metaphor and humor, involve the right hemisphere.

What does it mean that synaptic connections are pruned?

Synaptic connections that are not used are replaced or disappear.

How do neurotransmitters and synapses work?  

Connect axons and dendrites, allowing information to pass from one neuron to another. Synapse is a river that blocks the road, the neurotransmitters are the ferry.

What is myelination?  

The process of encasing axons with fat cells.

What effect do experiences early in life have on the brain? What makes a difference in a child’s developing to their full potential?  

Experiences determine how connections are made. Children’s environment guide the brains development. Children being exposed to a variety of stimuli – talking, touching, playing – are more likely to develop to their full potential.

What is the neuroconstructivist view of brain development?

Think our genes determine how our brains are wired and that the cells in the brain responsible for processing information just unfold with little or no input from environmental experiences.


How much does a typical infant sleep?

Average of 12.8 hours. Range of 9.7 to 15.9

How old until they sleep through the night?

Majority by 6 months.

What is REM sleep and how much time do infants spend in this type of sleep?

Rapid Eye Movement. Infants spend half of their sleep time in REM.

What is SIDS? How many US infants die of SIDS in a year? When is risk the highest? What are some possible causes of SIDS?

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Infant stops breathing, usually in their sleep, dying without any apparent cause. 2,000 infant deaths annually. 2-4 months at highest risk. The main risks are maternal smoking and bed sharing.

How does sleeping at night affect a child’s cognition? Poor sleep patterns are related to?

The link between infant sleep and children’s cognitive functioning likely occurs because of sleeps role in brain maturation and memory consolidation which improve daytime alertness and learning. Poor sleep patterns are related to language delays in early childhood. Attention regulation and behavior problems are also linked to poor sleep patterns.


What are the positive effects of a mother breastfeeding her infant? When should a mother not breastfeed her infant?

Benefits: appropriate weight gain and reduced risk of child and adult obesity, reduced risk of SIDS, fewer gastrointestinal infections, and fewer lower respiratory tract infections. A mother should not breastfeed if she: is infected with AIDS or any other infectious disease that can be transmitted through her milk, has active tuberculosis, or is taking any drug that may not be safe for the infant.

What was found in a research review by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (2007)?

Women that breastfeed are typically wealthier, older, better educated, and are likely to be more health conscious than those who bottle feed, which could explain why breast fed children are healthier.

Regarding nutrition, what did a national study, of more than 3,000 young children, find, including the most common vegetable fed to babies?

U.S. parents are feeding their babies too few fruits and vegetables and too much junk food. Up to ⅓ of the babies ate no vegetables and fruit. By 15 months, french fries were the most common vegetables the babies ate.

Motor Development

What is dynamic systems theory? According to this theory, how is a motor skill developed?

Infants assemble motor skills for perceiving and acting. Perception and action are coupled. In order to develop motor skills, infants must perceive something in the environment that motivates them to act, then use their perceptions to fine tune their movements.

What are reflexes? What 3 examples are discussed?

Built in reactions to stimuli, they govern the newborns movements. Rooting reflex, sucking reflex, and moro reflex.

What are gross motor skills?

Skills that involve large muscle activities such as moving one’s arms and walking

What is the first skill learned?

Control of their heads

What must babies learn about surfaces for crawling or walking?

If it is safe or not. ex. steepness

When is a baby an “experienced walker”? What does walking experience lead to?

Walking experience leads to being able to gain contact with objects that were previously out of reach and to initiate interaction with parents and other adults, promoting language development.


Find the approximate month range for: When does a baby sit without support? Pull him/herself up to stand? Walk alone easily?

  • Sit without support: 4.5-8 months.

  • Pull him/her self up to stand: 6-10 months.

  • Walk alone easily: 11-14 months.

What do child development experts believe that is vital about motor development in the second year?

Motor activity is vital to the child’s competent development and that few restrictions, except those having to do with safety, should be placed on the child.

Sensory and Perceptual Development

What are: sensation, perception, Gibson’s ecological view?

  • Sensation- Occurs when information interacts with sensory receptors.

  • Perception- Perception of what is sensed

  • Gibson’s ecological view- We directly perceive information that exists in the world around us.

How is infant perception studied? Visual preference method. Habituation and dishabituation. Eye- tracking equipment. Why are researchers so enthusiastic about eye-tracking equipment?

  • Visual preference method- Studying whether infants can distinguish one stimulus from another by measuring the length of time they attend to different stimuli

  • Habituation and Dishabituation- Repeated stimulus, watch if infant decreases its response, they are no longer interested. Presenting new stimulus to see the infant’s response recovers. The infants can tell a difference between the two stimuli

  • Eye tracking equipment- Measuring eye movements that follow a moving object and can be used to evaluate the infant’s early visual ability

One of the reasons why researchers are enthusiastic about eye tracking equipment is that looking time is among the most important measures of infant perceptual and cognitive development

What is visual acuity? How accurate is a newborn’s vision?

Sharpness of vision. A newborn’s vision is 20/600
What is the most important visual stimuli in a child’s social environment and why?

Faces are the most important visual stimuli, they extract key information from others faces
What happens regarding occluded objects at 2 months?

They do not perceive them as complete before two months. After that, they see them as whole
When can infants perceive depth? What study examined depth perception, and how was this done?

3-4 months. Drop off covered by glass, would the infants crawl on it?

What are newborns sensitive to, and what behavior do they display? (Saffran, et al., 2006).

Especially sensitive to human speech sounds, turn toward the sound of a familiar caregivers voice
What can infants not hear immediately after birth? What improves by age 2, in distinguishing sounds and pitches?

Infants cannot hear soft sounds immediately after birth. By 2, they have considerably improved their ability to distinguish sounds with different pitches.

What is the outcome of regular, gentle touch (tactile stimulation)?

May have positive developmental outcomes

How sensitive is a newborn’s sense of smell?

They can differentiate among pleasant vs unpleasant odors.

What did Rosenstein & Oster (1988) find regarding taste compared to Harris et al., 1990)

2 hours after birth babies made different facial expressions when they tasted sweet, sour, and bitter solutions.

What is intermodal perception? How is this evident in newborns?

Integrating information from two or more sensory modalities, such as vision and hearing. Newborns turn their eyes and head toward the sound of a voice or rattle.

What is the difference between Gibson’s and Piaget’s views on perceptual development?

Gibson’s ecological view is more nativist. Piaget’s constructivist view is more empiricist. In Piaget’s view the ability to perceive size and shape constancy, 3 dimensional world, and intermodal perception, etc. develops later in infancy than Gibson’s view.

What was found regarding studies of infants born with cataracts?

The longer the delay in removing the cataracts, the more their visual development was impaired.

How are perception and motor activity (action) coupled?

They can guide each other. By moving eyes, arms, legs, and moving from one location to another, one can fully experience his or her environment and learn to adapt to it.

Cognitive Development

According to Piaget, what are: schemes, assimilation, accommodation, organization, equilibration, object permanence and A-not-B error.

  • Schemes- Actions or mental representations that organize knowledge.

  • Assimilation- When children use their existing schemes to deal with new information or experiences

  • Accommodation- When children adjust their schemes to account for new information and experiences

  • Organization- Grouping of isolated behaviors and thought into a higher order system

  • Equilibration- Mechanism by which children shift from one stage of thought to the next.

  • Object Permanence– The understanding that objects continue to exist even when they cannot be seen, heard, or touched.

  • A-not-B error– Tendency of infants to reach where an object was located earlier rather than where the object was last hidden

What is Spelke and others idea about core knowledge? What evidence for core knowledge was found in studies with puppets?

Spelke endorses a core knowledge approach, which states that infants are born with domain-specific innate knowledge systems. In research with puppets, infants as young as 4 months are more likely to make visually guided reaches towards a puppet that was helping vs a puppet that was hindering.

What is Johnson’s criticism of core knowledge?

He believes that infants Spelke assesses in her research have already accumulated hundreds, in some cases even thousands, of hours of experience in grasping what the world is about. Nativists completely neglect the infant’s social immersion and focus only on what happens inside the infant’s head apart from the environment.

How do infants process information with attention? Joint attention? What age range does joint attention emerge or observed?

Newborns can detect a contour and fix their attention on it. Older infants scan patterns more thoroughly. By 4 months, infant can selectively attend to an object.

Joint attention- individuals focus on the same object or event. Requires: the ability to track each other’s behavior, such as following someone’s gaze, one person directing another’s attention, and reciprocal interaction. Emerging forms occur at 7 to 8 months old.

What is the role of joint attention in learning, language, and self-regulation skills?

Joint learning plays an important role in learning because it helps them learn from other people/adults. And in language, the children that engage in more joint learning say their first word earlier and develop larger vocabularies. It has also been linked to self regulation  and involved delaying gratification for an attractive object.

What does Meltzoff (2004, etc.) believe about infants’ imitative abilities, based on his studies? Memory?

He sees infants imitative abilities as biologically based, because infants can imitate a facial expression within the first few days after birth. His studies of deferred imitation suggest that infants have memory, which is another important cognitive ability

What is the difference in the explicit memories of a child 6 months old compared to 20 months?

  • 6 months old can remember information for 24 hours.

  • 20 month olds can remember information they encountered 12 months earlier.

What is the cause of infantile amnesia?

During this stage, the prefrontal lobes of the brain are immature, this area of the brain is believed to play an important role in storing memories of events.

Language Development

What is the sequence of babies’ sounds and gestures in the first year?

  • Crying- from birth

  • Cooing- first from 2-4 months

  • Babbling- first in the middle of first year

  • Gestures- first about 8-12 months

What did Kuhl’s research (2000, etc.) show us about infants and phonemes?

Before they begin to learn words, infants can make fine distinctions among the sounds of a language.
When do infants begin to segment a stream of speech into words? What happens when infants extract an increasing number of potential word forms from the speech they hear?

In the second half of their first year.  They begin to associate these with concrete, perceptually available objects in their world.

Receptive and spoken vocabulary: how many words can an infant understand (but not say) by 13 months? When can they say that many words?

They understand about 50 words at 13 months, but can’t say that many until they are 18 months

What is the vocabulary spurt and when does this tend to happen?

A rapid increase in vocabulary that begins around 18 months

What is vocabulary development at 16-24 months related to, five years later?

Infant vocabulary development at 16 to 24 months was linked to vocabulary, phonological awareness, reading accuracy, and reading comprehension five years later.

What is telegraphic speech?

The use of short, precise words without grammatical markers

Biological influences: What 2 areas of the brain were found to be involved in language?

Broca’s area and Wernicke’s area
Why is the behavioral view of language, not considered an explanation for how children acquire language?

It does not explain how people create novel sentences, sentences they have never heard or spoken before. It doesn’t not account for how children learn the syntax of their native language even if they are not reinforced for doing so.

What is linked to child directed speech?  Shared reading? Joint attention?

Child directed speech was linked to greater word production at 2 years of age than standard speech and speech in a group setting. Shared reading was positively related to the children’s language and cognitive development. Joint attention at 12-18 months helps with language skills at 2 years old.

HDF 211 Study Guide Chapter 4

Emotional Development

What are emotions? What are the roles of emotions in infancy?

Feeling or affect that occurs when a person is in a state or an interaction that is important to him or her. In infancy, emotions have important roles in: communication with others and behavioral organization.

What are examples of how emotions are influenced by cultural and relationship experiences? How do cultural experiences and relationships influence emotional development? What examples are discussed regarding stress?

When a toddler hears their parents fighting they often react with distress and inhibit their play. Emotion linked interchanges provide the foundation for the infant’s attachment to the parent.

Babies pick up on their mothers stress and have negative responses including an increased heart rate.

What are display rules and how do these vary by culture?

Rules governing when, where, and how emotions should be expressed. This varies by culture, mainly because of the parents influence to show or reserve emotion.

What emotions can infants express in their first six months? What did Kagan (2010, 2013) conclude about emotions?

Surprise, interest, joy, anger, sadness, fear, and disgust. Kagan cluded that the structural immaturity of the infant brain makes it unlikely that emotions that require thought, such as: guilt, pride, despair, shame, empathy, and jealousy, can be experiences in the first year.

What are the 3 types of cries commonly expressed by babies and what does each one mean? When should parents respond to crying, and why?

  • Basic cry: rhythmic pattern, usually hunger

  • Anger cry: variation of basic cry but more air forced through vocal cords.

  • Pain cry: sudden long initial loud cry followed by holding of breath, usually physical pain or high intensity stimulus.

Soothe a crying infant, especially within the first year to create healthy attachment.

When is smiling a reflex? Intentional?

Does not occur in response to external stimuli and appear during the first month after birth, usually during sleep. Not intentional.

When does fear appear and when does it peak?

Fear appears around 6 months and peaks around 18 months

What Is stranger anxiety? When are infants less fearful of strangers?

Infant showing fear and wariness of strangers. Show less stranger anxiety when they are in familiar settings

What is separation protest? Does this vary by culture? If so, in what way?

Crying when the caregiver leaves. Doesnt really vary by culture.

What is social referencing? How does this help infants?

Involves reading social cues in others to help determine how to act in a particular situation. Helps infants interpret ambiguous situations more accurately, like when they encounter a stranger.


What is the definition of temperament?

Individual differences in behavioral styles, emotions, and characteristic ways of responding

What is Chess & Thomas (1977, 1991) classification of children’s temperaments?

Easy child: generally positive, regular routines ; Difficult child: generally negative, irregular routines ; Slow to warm up child: low activity, somewhat negative, low intensity of mood

How does Kagan (2002, 2010, 2013) classify children?

Focuses on the differences between a shy, subdued, timid child and a sociable, extraverted, bold child. He regards shyness with strangers as one feature of a broad temperament category called inhibition to the unfamiliar.

How do Rothbart and Bates (2006) classify children?

Effortful control is an important dimension of temperament. Infants who are high in effortful control show an ability to keep their arousal from getting too intense and have strategies for soothing themselves.

What is “an important point about temperament classifications?

Children should not be pigeon holed as having one one temperament dimension, such as “difficult” or “negative.” Think of a temperament as consisting of multiple dimensions

”Biological Influences – how are physiological characteristics linked with different temperaments?

In particular, an inhibited temperament is associated with a unique physiological pattern that includes a high and stable heart rate, high levels of the hormone cortisol, and high activity in the right frontal lobe of the brain. This pattern may be tied to the excitability of the amygdala, a structure in the brain that plays an important role in fear and inhibition.

Gender –  What was found regarding how mothers respond differently to boys and girls?

Mothers were more responsive to the crying of irritable girls than to that of irritable boys.

Culture –   what differences have been found when comparing China to North America?

Behavioral inhibition is valued more highly in China than in North America

What is Goodness-of-Fit? When do parents recognize the significance of temperament? What can parents do to be sensitive to the temperaments of their children?

Goodness of fit refers to the match between a child’s temperament and the environmental demands the child must cope with.

Many parents don’t realize the importance of temperament until after the birth of their second child. The same strategies don’t always work for the second child that worked for the first child.

Strategies for temperament sensitive parenting: Attention to and respect for individuality, Structuring the child environment, Avoid applying negative labels to the child.


What 2 stages of social-emotional development, are discussed from Erikson’s stage theory? What are the issues or crisis with each stage?

Trust vs Mistrust stage: the issue of trust vs mistrust is not resolved once and for all in the first year of life, it arises again at each successive stage of development and the outcomes can be positive or negative.

Autonomy vs Shame and Doubt: important implications for the development of independence and identity during adolescence, gives them the courage to be independent individuals.

What is a rudimentary form of self-recognition? What strategy has been used to test this?

Being attentive and positive toward one’s image in a mirror. ex. dot on the child’s nose then places them in front of a mirror.

What factors are relevant to social orientation for young children? What does each contribute to the exploration of the social world?

  • Locomotion- allow the infant to independently initiate social interchanges. Motivational implications.

  • Intention, Goal Directed Behavior and Cooperation- Help them understand that other people have intentions

  • Social Referencing- Help determine how to act in a certain situation

When does intention and goal-directed behavior occur? Why is this an important social accomplishment?

Initially occurs toward the end of the first year. It helps the infants understand that other people have intentions


What was Bowlby’s theory?

Both the infant and its primary caregivers are biologically predisposed to form attachments

What is an internal working model and how significant is it?

A simple mental model of the caregiver, their relationship to him or her, and the self as deserving of nurturant care. Influences the infants, and later the child’s, subsequent responses to other people

What did Schaffer propose as an extension of Bowlby’s theory?

Four phases based on Bowlby’s conceptualization of attachment:

  • Phase 1: Birth-2 months: direct attachment to human figures.

  • Phase 2: 2-7 months: attachment focused on one figure, usually primary caregiver

  • Phase 3: 7-24 months: specific attachments develop. Seek contact with regular caregivers

  • Phase 4: 24 months and on: aware of other people’s feelings and goals, begins to take those in account

What did Ainsworth use to test attachment relationships? What 4 types did she find?

Strange Situation: observational measure of infant attachment in which the infant experiences a series of introductions, separations, and reunions with the caregiver and an adult stranger in a prescribed order.

4 Types: Securely attached, Insecure avoidant, Insecure resistant, Insecure disorganized

What has been found through many studies regarding early secure attachments and later outcomes?

Secure attachment in the first year of life provides an important foundation for psychological development later in life.

Under what circumstances is attachment found to be stable across time?

What factors were linked to changes in attachment?

Linked to stresses and supports in socioemotional contexts.

What is a developmental cascade and what is the application to attachment?

Involves connections across domains over time that influence developmental pathways and outcomes. Can include connections between a wide range of biological, cognitive, and socioemotional processes (ex. attachment)

What does Kagan (1987, 2002) point out regarding resilience?

  • He points out that infants are highly resilient and adaptive: He argues that they are evolutionarily equipped to stay on a positive developmental course even in the face of wide variation in parenting.

What are criticism of attachment theory?

  • Attachment theory ignores the diversity of socializing agents and contexts that exists in an infant’s world. A culture’s value system can influence the nature of attachment. For example: In the Northern Germany the expectations for an infant independence may be responsible for infants showing little distress upon  a brief separation from their mothers.    


How are caregivers described, who care for securely attached infants?

  • Securely attached babies have caregivers who are the sensitive to their signals and are consistently available to respond to infant’s needs.

The Family

How does marital conflict, or becoming a parent, affect infant behavior ?

What is reciprocal socialization?

  • Socialization that is bidirectional ,  That is , children socialize their parents just as  parents socialize their children. The most important form is scaffolding.

How are fathers’ experiences with their children described?

  • Stay – at – home fathers reported that when they took their children to playgrounds they were ostracized and excluded from playgrounds.

 Are they similar to or different than mothers in their behaviors toward their children? What factors were linked to father’s attachment with their infants?

  • Fathers have the ability to act as sensitively and responsively with their infants as mothers do. Recent study found that marital intimacy and partner support during pre-natal development  were linked to father-infant attachment.

Parental leave

How does the US leave policy compare with Nordic countries?

  • The united states currently allows up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for parents who are caring for newborns.  The Nordic countries have extensive gender-equity family leave policies for childbirth that emphasize contributions of both parents. e.g swede parents take 18 month, job protected parental leave with benefits.

The National Longitudinal Study of Child Care found:

*About the quality of child care in the United States? – Majority of the child care given in the first three years of life was unacceptably low quality.

Who received the lowest quality care?  –  Low -income – families received the lowest quality of child care.

When caregiver quality was high, what was the outcome for children? – The children performed better on cognitive and language tasks, were more cooperative and showed more positive and skilled interactions with peers.

What was the effect of caregiver training and favorable child-staff ratios? – They were linked to higher cognitive and social competence when children were 54 months of age.

*About children who spent extensive amounts of time in child care beginning in infancy – They experienced fewer sensitive interactions with their mothers and showed more behavior problem with higher illness rates.

*About especially important parenting influences? – Parenting was not weakened by extensive child care. Parents helped children in regulating their emotions.

HDF 211 Chapter 5 Study Guide

Physical Development in Early Childhood

Body Growth

How much does the average child grow in early childhood?

The average child grows 2 ½ inches and gains between 5 and 7 pounds a year

What factors contribute to height differences?

Heredity and environmental experiences


Where does the most rapid growth take place and in what tasks does it play a key role?

Prefrontal cortex. It plays a key role in planning and organizing new actions and maintaining attention to tasks.

What does myelination increase? What happens by age 4?

Increases the speed and efficiency of information traveling through the nervous system. Myelination in the areas of the brain related to hand-eye coordination is not complete until age 4.

What have researchers found is linked to poverty and to maternal sensitivity?

They are linked to the development of the brain.

Motor Development

What gross motor skills do 3 and 4 year olds have, that infants do not have?

Hopping, jumping, running, and walking up and down stairs with one foot on each step.

How are fine motor skills, by age 4, described?

Has improved substantially and is much more precise.

Nutrition and Exercise

What has become a serious health problem in early childhood? 45% of children meals exceed what?

Being overweight has become a serious health problem in early childhood. 45% of childrens meals exceed recommendations for saturated and trans fats.

Most major fast-food chains exceed how many recommended calories a day for 4-8 year olds? What vegetable are young children most likely to eat?

Most exceed 430 calories- ⅓ of what they should have for a day(3 meals) French fries and other fried potatoes are the most eaten vegetable for them

What is the strongest influence on what a child eats? What caregiver’s behaviors can lead to excessive weight gain?

It is strongly influenced by their caregivers behavior. Forceful and restrictive caregiver behaviors can lead to excessive weight gain.

What percent of young children are obese in the U.S., as of 2012?

8% of 2-5 year olds were obese.

If a child is obese during early childhood, what is likely at age 14 or in adulthood?

Overweight 5 year olds are four times more likely to be obese at 14

What disease is being diagnosed in children as young as age 5?

Type 2 diabetes

Food should be used for _______ and ______ but not for _______ or _______. (more than one word may fit into each blank)

Satisfying hunger ; meet nutritional needs ; proof of love ; as a reward for good behavior

What program addresses malnutrition in the U.S.? What were the benefits found for children who received better nutrition through WIC?

WIC. Positive influence on nutrition and health. Also can lead to school readiness

A research review of 17 studies found…?

A research review of 17 studies concluded that exercise was an effective strategy for reducing body fat in overweight and obese children

How can preschool children’s physical activity be enhanced?

By family members engaging in sports together and by parents perception that it was safe for their children to play outside

What are outcomes for children who live in a home where others smoke cigarettes?

More likely to develop wheezing and asthma, also related to sleep problems, including sleep disordered breathing. Also linked to children subsequently engaging in early onset of smoking in adolescence

High poverty rates in developing countries have what effects on the health of young children?

Often experience lives of hunger, malnutrition, illness, inadequate access to health care, unsafe water, and a lack of protection from harm

Cognitive Development in Early Childhood


What is the preoperational stage and at what ages does this occur?

Age 2-7. Children begin to represent the world with words, images, and drawings. Form stable concepts and begin to reason. Child’s cognitive world is dominated by egocentrism and magical beliefs.

What does the child not yet perform mentally?


What is the first substage of preoperational thought and at what ages does this occur?

What can the child do? What can the child not do as described by egocentrism?

Symbolic Function Substage- 2-4 years old. Gains the ability to mentally represent an object that is not present. They still cannot distinguish between one’s own perspective and someone else’s.

What is animism?

Belief that inanimate objects have lifelike qualities and are capable of action.

What is the second substage of thought and at what ages does this occur? What do “why” questions reveal about thought? How does Piaget describe this stage?

Intuitive Thought Substage- 4-7 years old. Why questions signal the emergence of interest in reasoning and in figuring out why things are the way they are. Piaget called this substage intuitive because children seem so sure about their knowledge and understanding, yet are unaware of how they know what they know. They know something but know it without the use of rational thinking and are something wrong as a result.

What is centration? Failing the conservation of liquid test is a sign of?

Centration is a centering of attention on one characteristic to the exclusion of all others. Failing the conservation of liquid test is a sign that children are at the preoperational stage of cognitive development